Dr Anthea Gulliford

Anthea Gulliford

School of Education
Programme Director, Applied Educational and Child Psychology Doctorate
Associate Professor Educational Psychology

Contact details

University of Birmingham
B15 2TT

Anthea is Programme Director to the Applied Educational and Child Psychology Doctorate, and Associate Professor in Educational Psychology.

She is a chartered and HCPC registered practitioner educational psychologist.


  • PhD Psychology, University of Nottingham
  • M Ed Psy, University of Birmingham
  • PGCE, Froebel Institute
  • MSc Experimental Psychology, University of Sussex
  • MA Modern History, University of Oxford
  • Health and Care Professions Council Registered Practitioner Psychologist
  • British Psychological Society member: Division of Educational and Child Psychology. Chartered Psychologist


Anthea worked in a variety of teaching roles, beginning in Hackney, before training as an educational psychologist. She has practised in a number of Local Authority Educational Psychology Services across the East and West Midlands, including in Senior and Service Manager roles.

In 2000 Anthea joined the University of Nottingham’s School of Psychology , where she authored and developed the Doctorate in Applied Educational Psychology. Anthea managed a number of educational psychology programmes for two decades at Nottingham, as a Programme Director and Research Director:

  • MSc Ed Psy Joint Programme Director.
  • D App Psy (Ed) [CPD doctorate] Programme Director
  • D App Ed Psy Joint Programme Director
  • D App Ed Psy Research Director

From a broad base in educational psychology, she has convened many doctoral modules, and developed bespoke training in several areas including:

  • Consultation skills, professional interpersonal skills, and group processes.
  • Applied Research Methods training for educational psychology.
  • Behaviour change processes, particularly as they can be implemented in the work of educational psychologists.
  • Organisational change and development processes, coaching, and organisational consultation.  Anthea has used Soft Systems Methodology to support system development and problem-solving in many professional and training settings.
  • Optimising education for bilingual and multilingual learners

Anthea has a strong interest in the promotion of social, emotional and mental health (SEMH) in schools; in consultative practice, and in promoting equality of opportunity, supporting the achievement and inclusion of diverse learners considered ‘vulnerable’.

She is concerned to promote work enhancing equality and diversity in educational psychology, and in education more widely, including in HE.

Anthea is co-editor of a key textbook, Educational Psychology: Topics in Applied Psychology, with UCL colleagues.


  • App Ed and Child Psy D
  • BSc Psychology in Education

Teaching  expertise includes: psychological consultation, applied research methods, group dynamics, behaviour change, organisational processes, understanding bullying in schools, supporting bilingual and multilingual learners.

Postgraduate supervision

Anthea has supervised over 70 educational psychology doctoral students, half of these as 1st supervisor, and three  PhD candidates (2nd supervisor).

Anthea’s doctoral research supervision has been funded by:

  • the Children’s Workforce Development Council
  • the Department for Education
  • the ESRC Midlands Doctoral Training Centre.

Recent supervised applied educational psychology research has included the following topics:

  • Perceptions of wellbeing in school in late adolescence.
  • The use of mental health apps and wellbeing in late adolescence.
  • Teacher attitudes to inclusion for learners with SEMH needs
  • Surveying the practice and perceptions of educational psychologists in promoting SEMH in schools
  • Ethnic identity and school belonging in adolescents
  • Resilience in Young Carers
  • Consultation in educational psychology: a sequence analysis
  • Supporting the inclusion of Looked After Children through collaborative group problem-solving.
  • Tablet-based maths learning in the early years; and for children with Down’s Syndrome.

PhD supervision:

  • The use of interactive maths apps to support early mathematical development in UK and Brazilian primary school children (2019)
  • Raising early maths achievement with tablet-based applications in multilingual lingual low socio-economic contexts in the UK (ongoing)
  • Decision making in educational psychology (ongoing)

Anthea is interested in supervising research into:

  • consultation in educational psychology
  • diverse questions of how to understand and support the wellbeing and/or achievement and inclusion of learners who are considered vulnerable;
  • preventive approaches to social emotional mental health in schools;
  • optimising educational psychology support to school staff, families, and communities, for example through consultation practices, group processes, and understanding behaviour change.

She is particularly interested in how educational psychology draws upon diverse research methods to illuminate applied practice.


Anthea has been evaluator to a Local Authority-wide Routes to Inclusion project supported by in Nottingham City Council, that promotes a graduated response to SEMH needs in primary schools, seeking to reduce school exclusions. She has served as consultant to the project’s development to secondary schools.

Anthea has collaborated with Professor Nicola Pitchford, and was Co-investigator to the Education Endowment Foundation study  ‘onebillion: app-based maths learning’, 2019, a classroom-based maths learning project in the early years investigating the effects of a tablet-based application.

Anthea and Nicola Pitchford secured a collaborative PhD studentship from the ESRC, to investigate the use of interactive apps to support maths learning for EAL learners in multilingual schools in low socio-economic areas.

Other activities

Anthea is involved in reviewing and editing in educational psychology:

  • Editorial Board member Educational and Child Psychology, 2018 - ongoing
  • Associate Editor, Frontiers in Education, Special Education Needs, 2016 - ongoing
  • Reviewer, Emotional and Behavioural Difficulties journal, 2016-ongoing
  •  Editorial board member Educational Psychology in Practice, 1999-2002

Anthea has delivered workshops for Local Authority Educational Psychology Services, including:

  • Developing Consultation in educational psychology practice.
  • Action Research for Attachment Aware schools
  • Soft Systems Methodology
  • Evaluating Professional practice through Single Case Experimental Designs.

Anthea has examined multiple  educational psychology doctoral theses. She has co-chaired the national Programme Directors for Educational Psychology group.


Gulliford, A., Walton, J., Allison, K., & Pitchford, N.J.P. (2021) A qualitative investigation of implementation of app-based maths instruction for young learners. Educational and Child Psychology, 38, 3, 90-108.

Pitchford, N. J., Gulliford, A., Outhwaite, L.A. Davitt, L. J., KatabuaE., & Essien, A.A. (2021) Using interactive apps to support learning of elementary maths in multilingual contexts: Implications for practice and policy development in a digital age. PP 135-153. In Anthony Essien and Audrey Msimanga (Eds). Policy and Practice in STEM Multilingual Contexts: Multilingual Education Yearbook 2021. Springer. doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-72009-4

Zafeiriou, M. E. &Gulliford, A. (2020) A grounded theory of educational psychologists’ mental health casework in schools: connection, direction and reconstruction through consultation. Educational Psychology in Practice 36(4), 422-442. doi.org/10.1080/02667363.2020.1818553

Outhwaite, L.A. & Gulliford, A. (2020) Briefing note: academic and social-emotional interventions in response to Covid-19 school closures. UCL Centre For Education Policy & Equalising Opportunities. https://www.ucl.ac.uk/ioe/departments-and-centres/centres/centre-education-policy-and-equalising-opportunities

Outhwaite, L., Gulliford, A., & Pitchford, N. (2020). Language Counts when Learning Mathematics with Interactive Apps. British Journal of Educational Technology. doi.org/10.1111/bjet.12912

Gough, G. & Gulliford A. (2020) Resilience Among Young Carers: Investigating Protective Factors as Perceived by Young Carers. Educational Psychology in Practice. doi.org/10.1080/02667363.2019.1710469

Turner, J. & Gulliford A. (2020)Examining the Circles of Adults process for Children Looked After: the role of self-efficacy and empathy in staff behaviour change. Educational Psychology in Practice, 36:1, 32-51, doi.org/10.1080/02667363.2019.1667752

Outhwaite, L. A., Gulliford, A., & Pitchford, N. J. (2019). A new methodological approach for evaluating the impact of educational intervention implementation on learning outcomes. International Journal of Research & Method in Education, 43(3), 225-242.

View all publications in research portal